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  • Shani Nizan

Game Example

This game was going on for only a while. The reason why it stopped, shows why the game was so important in the first place:

For me, workout was the most unachievable thing. I was always bad at sports and I could never find one thing that counts as workout I can actually enjoy. Swimming could have been an option if the nearest pool wasn't so far, or maybe bike-ride if I wasn't so terrified riding in the city between all the cars.

I do enjoy other things and happy to maintain some good habits with no effort at all: Making coffee for me and my (almost) husband every morning, taking care of my plants, listening to music - mostly to music that I know from a long time ago since I also very much enjoy nostalgia.

The first rule of creating a game is to make it enjoyable , and sure enough the workout part is not going to be the enjoyable part. I realized that whenever I listen to uplifting music from my childhood I feel like dancing - specifically from a musical called "Pestigal" that happens once a year in Israel since 1981. But "feeling like dancing" is not enough. I learned from James Clear that I also need a trigger and a reward.

The game went like this: For every song I dance to, I put one marble in the jar. Once the jar is full (around 300 marbles) I get a new plant!

That's it! really simple! Every time I saw that jar in the living room I felt like dancing, every time I was sitting on the balcony wishing for a new plant - I felt like dancing. Every time I saw this playlist on Spotify - felt like dancing. The game was working perfectly!

BUT THEN.... One day after dancing I was showing off to my (almost) Husband, showing him that the jar is almost full. He was right to mention, that we probably shouldn't buy a plant this time cause we need the money for something more important.

That's it, the game was ruined. from the moment I didn't have the plant to aim for , there wasn't a reason to collect marbles and definitely not to work hard for them.

Since then I've been using the app that counts my steps and to get to 6,000 a day Im running in place while I watch Gilmore Girls.

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